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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some of our frequently asked questions. If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

  1. What is the Arkansas automobile minimum liability limits?
  2. How can my auto rate be lowered when buying a new car?
  3. Seven Shopping Strategies For New Car Buyers
  4. Tips For Protecting Boats And Motorcycles
  5. Sinking boat insurance myths
  6. Get ready for bike season in five simple steps
  7. A trip in an RV shouldn’t ruin your marriage … or your day
What is the Arkansas automobile minimum liability limits?
The State of Arkansas requires a minimum of $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident and $25,000 property damage.   We always recommend a higher limit of liability.



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How can my auto rate be lowered when buying a new car?

It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates – as an independent agency, Coker Insurance can help! We can review your policy and possibly help you find a variety of illuminating ways to save money. Here are some things you may want to consider:

 

• Ask us to check several companies’ rates. This is the single most important thing you can do to get the best possible rate—and we can do it for you quickly and easily. The difference between the highest and lowest rate available to you from different companies could vary by hundreds of dollars.

 

• Reduce or drop physical damage coverage on an older car. Depending on your car’s age and where you live, comprehensive and collision coverage may not be worth keeping. We can give you advice on whether it makes sense to reduce or drop this coverage altogether.

 

• Raise your deductible. According to the Insurance Information Institute, raising your deductible from $200 to $500 could reduce your collision and comprehensive cost by 15 to 30 percent. In addition, because the average driver files a collision claim only once every ten years, odds are that over the lifetime of your car, a higher deductible will save you money. We can show you how raising your deductible will lower your premium.

 

• Look for discounts. Many insurance companies reduce premiums for certain driver traits or car features. For example: being a homeowner for more than three years, nonsmoker, nondrinker, students with good grades, senior citizens who have taken an approved defensive driving course, people who only drive for pleasure, cars kept in garages, antilock brakes, antitheft devices, air bags, etc. Ask us to check.

 

• Don’t assume having your car and home insured by the same company is the best option. Because auto insurance rates vary so much from company to company, it may make sense for you to have your car and home insured by separate companies. Let’s talk about it.

 

To learn more about all an independent agency can offer you, call Coker Insurance at 870-886-6643.



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Seven Shopping Strategies For New Car Buyers

New car shopping can be a lot of fun, especially if you’re a car enthusiast. But others can find the experience stressful and tedious. Either way, there’s a lot to think about. According to a survey of car shoppers, overall purchase price is the most important factor when shopping for a new car (46 percent), followed by make and model (31 percent).

 

Safety and performance come in a distant third, tied at seven percent. But whether you’re turned on or turned off by the dizzying array of car choices, trim options, “expert” reviews, incentives and other deals, it definitely pays to approach car buying strategically.

 

So if you’re in the market for a new vehicle and you find yourself having trouble keeping a clear head, just keep these strategies, courtesy of Coker Insurance, in mind:

 

1. Decide how much money you can spend and what type of vehicle best suits your needs. Just looking for the basic transport capability of a small or medium sedan? Or do you need the hauling capacity of a van or SUV? Something practical? Something sporty? Something in between?

 

2. Research crash tests and accident data available from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

 

3. Shop around for financing. If you can, apply for and get approval for a loan from a bank, credit union or other financier before you even visit the dealership. Being a “cash buyer” gives you an advantage when you do finally meet with the dealership’s financing person.

 

4. Test drive the car. Try to drive in conditions that will be similar to those under which you’ll drive every day.

 

5. Check pricing for your desired make and model at two or three dealerships and use that information to help you negotiate the best deal.

 

6. Get a firm quote, in writing. This should include not only the cost of the car, but any fees and the sales tax.

 

7. Inspect your new car carefully before driving off the lot. Make sure all the options you’ve ordered are included and that the body and paint are free of scratches or dents.

 

Finally, it’s important to consider the cost of auto insurance, although it seems that few people realize that what they pay for insurance can add significantly to the vehicle’s total cost.



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Tips For Protecting Boats And Motorcycles

Before you take your motorcycle on the road or put your boat on the water, it may pay to be certain your insurance is ship-shape.

 

Motorcycles and boats are often significant investments, and the right insurance policy can help protect them. Here are a few tips, courtesy of Coker Insurance:

 

·         Evaluate your specific needs. Insuring a boat or a motorcycle is different than insuring your car or home. A specialized motorcycle policy, for instance, can provide coverage for custom paint jobs and aftermarket equipment that might not be covered if the bike were just added to a generic auto policy.

 

·         Similarly, a specialized boat policy could cover things like the cost to replace lost or damaged fishing gear and costly services such as emergency on-water towing and fuel-spill cleanup. You probably wouldn’t get this coverage by adding a boat to a homeowner’s policy.

 

·         Consult with an independent agency – like Coker Insurance. Unlike “captive” agents who represent only one company, independent insurance agents and brokers are licensed insurance professionals who represent several companies. They can offer you a variety of coverages, review and evaluate your policies, suggest new coverage options that meet your changing needs and answer your questions.

 

“An independent insurance agent or broker can make sure you have the specialized coverage you need to protect your boat or bike,” said Jim Lloyd, of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. “Some insurance companies provide only bare-bones protection for your boat or motorcycle by simply adding it onto your existing auto or homeowner’s policy, but independent agents and brokers can review and evaluate your needs to help match you with the company that will provide you with the combination of specialized coverage, service and price that’s best for you.”

 

To learn more about Boat and Motorcycle insurance, contact Coker Insurance or visit www.cokercompanies.com



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Sinking boat insurance myths

You don't believe in the Loch Ness Monster. You don’t believe your friend caught Jaws fishing off the Florida coast. So why do most boaters believe boat insurance covers them wherever they go?

 

Progressive surveyed more than 1,000 boat owners. It uncovered a few insurance myths floating around. Here's a sample of the findings and the facts behind each:

 

Myth: Everyone pays more for insurance because of the hurricanes from a couple of years ago.

Reality: Even though it’s believed by 74 percent of respondents, it isn’t true. Boat insurers generally price policies based on claims in each state. For example, Ohio customers won't pay more for insurance because of hurricanes in Florida.

 

Myth: Boat insurance covers me anywhere I decide to go boating.

Reality: Seventy-six percent of respondents believed this one. The reality is some insurers only provide coverage where the boat is used most. Insurers may limit coverage to 100 nautical miles of your home port. Progressive provides coverage virtually anywhere you decide to go in the continental U.S. and Canada.

 

Myth: I’ll get a better insurance rate if I buy from the same company that insures my home or car.

Reality: Buying more than one product from the same insurance company doesn't mean you get the best rate – even though 45 percent of respondents thought so. Boaters can save by shopping around and combining specialized policies from different companies.

 

"It’s important to understand what’s available," said Dominic Mediate of Progressive. "You want to be properly protected in case your boat is stolen, you get into an accident or contents are damaged. We’re separating fact from fiction so boaters can make the best insurance decisions possible."



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Get ready for bike season in five simple steps

There’s nothing like cruising down the open road on your motorcycle – the wind in your hair and a few bugs in your teeth.

 

Before you hit the highways and byways this season, make sure your insurance policy is up to speed so that you and your bike are protected.

Here are a few tips from the experts at Progressive:

 

1. Make sure your insurance policy is still in force. Some companies have a winter layaway period when some coverages are restricted. Check with your insurance company to see if you have any type of limited coverage.

 

2. Update your policy. Let your insurance company know about any changes like additional riders, a new address or customized parts. A quick call to your independent agent can secure coverage that meets your needs.

 

3. Cover customized parts. Parts such as chrome plating, a new paint job, saddlebags or special rims usually increase the value of your bike. If you’ve added custom parts or equipment, make sure they’re protected.

 

4. If you don’t need it, drop it. If you own an older bike, check its value. Don’t pay for coverage that you don’t need. Consider dropping collision coverage if the premium equals 10 percent of the bike’s market value. Understand, however, that you won’t be covered if your bike overturns or collides with another object.

 

5. Shop around. Prices can vary from company to company, so shop around. Another tip: If you purchase comprehensive and collision coverage, consider raising your deductibles. This can lower the cost of your physical damage coverage.



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A trip in an RV shouldn’t ruin your marriage … or your day

Mistakes happen, especially when you’re somewhere unfamiliar, but the results of a recent survey may still surprise you.

 

The survey found that among RVers, a spouse is more likely to be accidentally left behind than the dog.

 

A leading RV insurer, The Progressive Group of Insurance Companies, surveyed more than 1,000 RVers countrywide to uncover amusing mishaps they’ve experienced while traveling.

 

The survey found that the most common blunders made while traveling are:

•driving away with the steps extended;

•backing into something;

•misjudging overhead or side clearance space;

•not connecting taillights correctly; and

•running out of gas.

 

The survey found that 53 percent of RVers spend a month or more each year traveling the open road, and 42 percent travel more than 500 miles per trip.

 

Traveling the open road in an RV can be a great adventure, but sometimes it gets a little bumpy. That’s why RVers were also asked about their insurance. When mishaps happen, you want to get back on the road fast—ideally with all of your passengers on board.

 

Only 28 percent bought a stand-alone insurance policy with specialized RV coverages. In fact, 54 percent simply added their RV to their auto policy, and 14 percent didn’t buy any RV insurance.

 

Although mishaps can sometimes be funny, they can also lead to costly damages. Simply adding your RV to your auto policy can leave you woefully underprotected. It’s important to know what coverages are available to adequately protect yourself and your vehicle.

 

“There are huge differences in coverage and services from companies that specialize in RV insurance,” says Cathy Pelfrey, RV product manager at Progressive. “Check with your local independent insurance agent or do research online so that you buy the policy and coverages that are right for you.”



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